The Border Collie Rottweiler mix is a relatively new mixed breed, whose parents are, in case you haven’t guessed, the Border Collie and the Rottweiler. He is an energetic and fun guy with his family, yet shy and wary of strangers. He is also quite protective over his family, so expect a great guard dog from him.
There are many different things you’ll want to think through before you adopt a Border Collie Rottweiler mix. Because of his active nature, he’s not the perfect mix for everyone. He can be a popular designer dog for people who own land or have areas for him to roam around freely.
He is sometimes known as the Rottcollie, although throughout this article we will refer to him as the more popular nickname, the Border Rottie, and if you are looking forward to learning more about him, then stick with us!
A designer dog is just a designed puppy, meaning that two purebred dogs have been purposefully selected and mated to create a designer dog. While this makes it sound a bit posh, it is a practice that has been in existence for centuries, but it is only now that it has really become popular thanks to celebrities having certain designer dogs of their own.
Cross breeding has benefits such as giving families the ability to mix up two dogs that they cannot choose between, as well as increasing their gene pool and making them slightly healthier overall. The Border Rottie is a mix of the Rottweiler and Border Collie, two breeds that are at the opposite ends of the spectrum in many ways, from appearance all the way to temperament and traits. Let’s look at the parent breeds a little closer before looking at what you can expect from the mix.
The Border Collie originates from the Viking times in the United Kingdom. He was bred from a mixture of large Roman herding dogs and smaller Spitz type Viking dogs. The Border Collie is one of the most famous and impressive herding dogs in the world and is used across the globe. Not only are they one of the best sheep dogs around, but he also dominates the agility ring as he is super intelligent and agile. His intelligence has also been voted the best by Veterinarians across the world. He made his way over to America and it was only in 1995 when he joined the herding group of the American Kennel Club (AKC).
In 2019, the Border Collie was ranked as the 35th most popular dog breed in America by the AKC. He is described as affectionate, smart and energetic, and it is these qualities that give the Border Rottie his intelligent yet gentle traits. He’s a stellar parent breed for other mixed breeds like the Borador, Border Husky or Border Shepherd.
The Rottweiler was born in Germany, specifically the town of Rottweil, and he was a herder come livestock protector used to herd and march livestock from market town to market town. Whilst they are famously known for being protection dogs and police dogs across the world, they are less known for being amongst one of the first assistance dogs for the blind, and they excelled as search and rescue dogs at the World Trade Center ground.
The Rottweiler, in 2019, was ranked as the 8th most popular dog breed in America by the AKC. He is described as a loyal, loving and confident guardian, and it is from this parent that the Border Rottie inherits his protective and loyal characteristics. Some popular Rottie mixes include the Shepherd Rott mix, and the Rottie Lab mix.
The Border Rottie
Whilst his parents both come from Europe, the Border Rottie’s origins aren’t exactly clear, which is quite common when it comes to most new hybrid dogs. It is likely that someone somewhere desired a dog with the protection skills of the Rottweiler and the intelligence of the Border Collie. It is believed that he was designed in the last few decades, and despite being a wonderful looking guy he is not one of the most popular designer dogs unlike the
The Border Rottie will be a mixture of both of his parents, and it can never be guaranteed as to which characteristics he may inherit. As such, if you are preparing to welcome one of these guys into your home, then you need to be open minded as to what this gorgeous big puppy might be like. Our advice is that if you expect traits from either parent then you should not be disappointed with this gorgeous guy. Open mindedness is the key here, and if there are certain traits that you do not like, then it is advised that you seek another hybrid dog altogether.
Firstly, the Border Rottie will be energetic, and as such he needs to be placed with a family who can provide him with the exercise that he needs, as well as continual company and stimulation throughout the day. He is a lively character who will provide endless hours of fun for his family and would appreciate a doggy agility class or two. He does not like to be left alone for hours at a time, because he prefers to be with his human family and know that they are safe, which often causes him separation anxiety.
Secondly, he is going to be protective of his family thanks to the guarding tendencies of the Rottweiler, and the aloofness of the Border Collie. He will be loyal to his family and will often be at your heel at all times. He will either be wary of strangers, or actively protective when they enter your estate, but either way you need to prepare for a dog with guarding tendencies of some degree. He will undoubtedly be reserved with strangers or in shy in unfamiliar settings, so it may take him a while to warm up before he becomes his normal self.
Thirdly, you can expect that he will be affectionate with his immediate family, so don’t worry, you can still expect cuddles from him on the sofa if this is a canine quality that appeals to you and the family. His protectiveness means that he will want to protect you, be that from an intruder or a scary villain in a film, so expect a canine shield who will lend a helping paw should you ever need one.
Fourthly, you can expect a lot of fun with him. His energy and intelligence mean that you and your family will never be bored, and he will always get involved in the family fun. His Rottweiler parent is known to be a bit dopey despite his mean exterior, and it is likely that the Border Rottie will be no different, so expect him to be walking into walls and stumbling into doors as though he has had one too many.
Size & Appearance
Just like any other mixed dog, the Border Rottie can be expected to look like a mix of his parents, or closely resemble one parent more than the other. The Border Rottie will measure anywhere between 19 and 27 inches tall, and he will weigh between 30 and 135 pounds. There is not a breed standard nor a database to take information from unlike most breeds, and therefore he will fall anywhere in between his parent’s size parameters. It is likely, however, that he will fall more into the middle of this wide-ranging height and weight scales.
Overall, he will appear more slender and slimmer compared to the average Rottweiler, and more sturdy and muscular compared to the Border Collie. It will be more common for him to inherit his Rottweiler’s dark colored eyes, and on occasion he will inherit the bright blue eyes of the Border Collie. On even rarer occasions he might inherit different colored eyes, which again, runs in the Border Collie blood, and this is called heterochromia. It is likely that he will have a thick and sturdy tail with big paws, and there is an equal chance of having the large floppy ears of the Rottweiler, or the smaller side ears of the Border Collie.
Coat & Colors
The Border Rottie will have a medium length coat just like his parents. It will be a double coat, again just like his parents, as it was this that protected them from the cold harsh winters in the Scottish Highlands and the wild German forests. Wherever the Border Rottie lives, he will cope with cold weather, but also hot if he must!
It is likely that he will inherit the black and tan coloring of the Rottweiler, with his tan colored eyebrow and leg markings. It is possible for the second most common color coat, the black and white color, to be inherited from the Border Collie parent. But overall with this guy, his appearance is very unpredictable even within the same litter mix.
Exercise & Living Conditions
The Border Rottie is going to need at least 60 minutes of exercise a day to keep him physically stimulated. Both of his parents can become quite destructive if their exercise needs aren’t meant, and the Border Rottie is going to be no different! With both of his parents being herders, he would also make a great herding animal should you want an alternative to the traditional Border Collie which will keep him physically entertained enough throughout the day. He would equally love to join you on jogs and biking excursions around the forest, so as long as his bones have stopped growing.
Because of the Border Collie’s supreme intelligence the Border Rottie is also going to need mental stimulation throughout the day, otherwise he will again become destructive. This can take the form of the ‘guess which cup game’, whereby you hide a treat under one cup, with two empty cups either side and mix them up, and more often than not he will signal the correct cup to retrieve the treat. Additionally, other self-executing treat filled puzzle toys will keep him entertained during the hours that you cannot be with him.
This guy will need to be placed into a larger home with access to a reinforced backyard, as he will not be suited to apartment living, or any smaller accommodations. He needs fresh air throughout the day otherwise he will get canine cabin fever and go a bit crazy.
He is suited to families with older children and this is twofold. Firstly, if he inherits his Border Collies herding genes, then he may try to herd young children which can result in heel nipping and constant circling, which can be tiresome and worrying for some parents. Secondly, with his high energy mixed with his large and stocky size, he may accidently knock younger children over, which again is not ideal. Therefore he is best suited to families with older children only.
Because of the herding tendencies of the Border Collie and the protectiveness of the Rottweiler, it is advised that unless the Border Rottie is put into an already established multi-pet home and grows up with them as a puppy, then he would be better suited to a single pet family. Of course, this is not true in every case, and he may well do well with other pets, but it is something to consider before welcoming him into your home if this is an important factor for you.
The Border Rottie will need to be socialized from a very early age to ensure that he does not become too overprotective over his family and his estate. It will also ensure that he does not feel the need to herd younger members of the family or other pets. It also ensures that they grow up into well-mannered dogs who are as confident as they can be in unfamiliar surroundings when they are already aloof in their nature.
Positive reinforcement training is the only method of training for this guy, as he can react adversely to harsh and physical punishment similar to most other dogs. He is very eager to please his master, and often praise will be his motivation, so plenty of verbal compliments and scratches behind the ear will be enough to motivate this guy to keep performing those commands and tricks that you are trying to teach him.
The Border Rottie, having no breed standards yet and not much information regarding his specific health concerns, is a slightly unknown entity when it comes to his health. However, as with all new designer dogs, the best way to determine what he might suffer from is to look at his parent’s health.
The Border Collie parent is a very healthy breed who suffers from Hip Dysplasia, which is a joint abnormality which is common in most larger dogs. It is characterized by lame rear legs or pain when walking, so be sure to look out for this in the Border Rottie. He will also suffer from a variety of eye conditions, with Collie Eye Anomaly and Progressive Retinal Atrophy being the most common, and they both eventually cause total blindness, so be sure that your Border Rottie undergoes regular Ophthalmologist evaluations.
The Rottweiler parent also suffers from Hip Dysplasia, but with the additional Elbow Dysplasia, which is the same but with the elbow joint being affected. The Rottweiler parent also suffers from a variety of eye conditions, with Entropion being more associated with the Rottweiler, which is where the eyelid turns inwards causing irritation and vision impairment. Additionally the Rottweiler will also require a cardiac examination because he suffers with Dilated Cardiomyopathy which is where his heart walls become thin and this can lead to heart failure.
Overall, the Border Rottie is a healthy dog breed who will live between 10 to 12 years of age.
The Border Rottie will consume around 2 to 3 cups of food a day, dependent on his energy levels and size. If he is slightly more sedentary like his Rottweiler parent then he will need around 2 cups, and if he is more active like his Border Collie parent then he will need closer to 3 cups.
If he inherits his Rottweiler parents appetite then he will want to snack all day long, so be careful to monitor his food intake. If he is left to his own devices then he will eventually become obese, and this will further impact his cardiac issues, which obviously should be avoided altogether. So, make sure the Border Rottie steers clear of the multiple snacks.
The Border Rottie will be a moderate shedder just like both of his parents, so you can expect to brush him 2 to 3 times a week. During shedding season it is advised that you brush him every day to ensure that his coat is kept free of dead hair, as well as keeping his coat manageable for your home and sanity.
He should be bathed once every 6 to 8 weeks to ensure that he is kept clean and doggy odor free, and all other grooming habits such as nail trimming and ear cleansing is the same as every other dog.
As Family Pets
- The Border Rottie is a friendly and affectionate dog.
- He’s very attached to his close family and loves attention.
- He is likely to be protective of his family and estate.
- He can make a good guard dog and will alert you to when someone is about.
- The Border Rottie is likely to be aloof with everyone who is not in his immediate family.
- Because of this, don’t expect him to be over-friendly with everyone.
- For this reason, it is very important for his family to invest time in training.
- You’ll want to ensure that he is socialized as early as possible.
- The Border Rottie is a large dog and active dog that needs a yard.
- He is suited to a family with older children who he cannot easily knock over.
- There is a chance that he may be suited to a multi-pet household.
- He should grow up with them as a puppy rather than them being introduced at a later stage.
- Hey may not be likely not to accept them at a later age due to his herding and protective tendencies.
- He is a moderate shedder and he will not suit a family with dog allergies.
Breeders & Puppy Costs
The average cost of a Border Rottie will be around $1,000 from a reputable breeder. Remember, as with any dog and especially designer dogs, you should make the extra effort to find a reputable breeder that is ethical, and not a breeder who is just breeding dogs for their looks and size.
Unscrupulous puppy mills will focus on popular designer dogs who will create them the most money without any thought or care for their health. While it may initally seem like a good idea to get a cheaper puppy, you are potentially causing yourself more heartache, increased Veterinarian bills and keeping the puppy mills in business. The use of online search engines, reading reviews, social media groups and speaking to Rottweiler and Border Collie breeders may be the best start of your search for your canine soulmate.
Rescue & Shelters
Because the Border Rottie is a rare dog it is unlikely that you will find him in rescue kennels as there are so few around anyway. For the best chance of finding a Border Rottie in a rescue shelter you should speak to and visit as many local shelters as possible. Be sure to ask if they have a waiting list for the next Border Rottie, and if they do just bear in mind that you might have to wait a long time for him.
The Border Rottie is a big boy with a big heart for his immediate family, and would do anything to protect and look after them. He will always be by your feet when you are at home, or waiting for you at the door while you are out.
The most important things to consider regarding the Border Rottie is that he will need to be placed with a suitable family who have got the time to invest in adequate socialization training from a very young age to ensure that he grows into a well mannered and balanced pup, and he also requires at least 60 minutes of exercise a day.
So if you think that he sounds like the perfect dog for you then what are you waiting for?! Start your search today for this rare designer breed.
January 7, 2023 at 11:00 am
Thanks for the information. My Border Rottie is the opposite in temperament- he loves meeting new people and dogs and has a tendency to go over to people and lean on them. Typically he doesn’t like loud noises or a lot of activity and will wander elsewhere. Basically he is a beautiful and gentle boy that everybody loves!
December 11, 2022 at 7:25 pm
Reading this article is spot on to my big boy. He is very smart with both breed traits herding and guarding. Although his coat is the colour of a Rottie it is long like the BC and the amount he loses is like our Persian cats.
I'm in Australia and my daughter's Rottweiler surprised her with 6 healthy puppies in May 2020 (5M, 1F). The Border Collie up the road was the culprit.
My boy (now neutered) is 55kgs (120 pounds) with Black and Tan markings, another boy was Black & Tan and the other 4 were Black and White. He weighted 40kgs at 18 months old when he was fixed.
He will be coming with me on the lap around Oz in 2025. I know with him by my side I have the best protection anyone could ask for.
September 11, 2021 at 12:27 am
My border Collie got bred with my sons German Rottweiler by accident while my Aussie was at my daughters getting bred on purpose. My other son came over and his brothers Rottweiler came with him and he let him in the fence. We didn't know she was in heat. We now have 8 Border Rotties born the 26th of August. They're eyes just opened 2 days ago. Wow, their huge and I need to find them homes when they're ready. Any suggestions? Their tails are docked and they'll be wormed and first shots before they leave my home. I'm big on shots, I hate parvo.
September 13, 2021 at 10:20 am
Wow, what an adorable "problem" to have, Laura! We would recommend searching online for rescue organizations affiliated with either of these two breeds within a 100 mile radius or so. You could also visit the AKC website to find rescues for the two respective breeds to see if any of them in your region could help. Best of luck and enjoy those puppy snuggles while you have them.
September 30, 2021 at 1:22 am
I have a year-old Border Rottie and he is the best dog I’ve ever had! He’s almost solid black except for a white streak on his chest, a cute white soul patch on his chin, and a couple of white spots on his toes. He has a long, beautiful tail that’s always up and wagging.
He has lots of energy, is super loyal, and is always at my feet. He’s super friendly with dogs and people. I have seen him be protective when some shady characters approached my car at a gas station.
He has plenty of confidence, but doesn’t seem to be dominant or submissive. He’ll do just about anything I ask of him except be “formally” trained. Lots of pets and loves and praise when he does things I want him to learn and he learns very quickly. He learns passively and has mastered basic commands.
I can let him off-leash and he doesn’t get too far before he turns around and checks to make sure I’m still there. He’s great with kids and small animals (he wants to herd them).
He’s adventurous. I’ve taken him camping, to the beach, to the lake, river rafting, and he loves a long road trip.
Right now he weighs about 65 lbs but I’m guessing he will gain about 10 more pounds as he fills out.
He will wear clothes and shoes (for hiking, rocky streams, and hot pavement).
He’ll do pretty much anything I ask him to do, because he trusts and loves me so much.
He’s highly intelligent. On a scale from 1-10, I give him an 11.
Apiffany Gaither Billings
September 30, 2021 at 8:54 am
He sounds like an incredible dog and partner to have in your life. What a great pup! Please send him pets and scratches from us!
September 4, 2021 at 7:39 pm
Currently seeking rottie border collie or rottie aussie 8-10 week male puppy to train as my mobility service dog. Contact me here.
August 18, 2021 at 8:11 am
I had a border collie rottie that just recently passed away a few weeks ago. He was a rescue and by far the best dog I ever had. He was all of what this article stated. He was my gentle giant, unless he thought you were a threat, weighing in at 120 lbs.
August 18, 2021 at 10:37 pm
Sorry for your loss, Robin. Hopefully, you can welcome a new pup into your home when the time is right. Appreciate you taking the time to share your experience!
Angela Geoghegan Duffy
May 25, 2021 at 9:51 pm
We have a Rottweiler cross collie, or so we have been told but looks nothing like that he is completely brown with a black pointed tail. Is there any way of sending a photo would you be as to tell me by looking at him? He is just a big pet with lots of fun in him!
May 27, 2021 at 8:25 pm
Hi Angela! You can feel free to reach out to us on our contact page. I'd recommend having a DNA panel done for your pup, though. We've done two of them with Embark, and the results were great. If you wait for the sales, they aren't terribly expensive. Thanks for the comment!
February 11, 2021 at 5:35 am
We believe that we have a Border-Rottie. We adopted him but the previous owner had the details from the breeder which says that he is a tri-color collie. I have had Borders in the past and used to show them so I am fairly sure that he is not a pure border collie. He looks like all of the pictures of Border Rotties and was born in 2003.
February 11, 2021 at 2:26 pm
Hi Steve! Thanks for commenting! Sounds like a great pup. If you really want to know his genetics, I'd look at a doggy DNA test. We have used Embark twice, and have been very happy with the end result! Good luck with your pup!
September 19, 2020 at 2:17 pm
The magnificent border rotties take my breath away! They are the most beautiful dogs I have ever seen. My BC has passed and, now that I am retired, I have a dream of creating a Border Collie Rottweiler family.
September 19, 2020 at 5:51 pm
Thanks for the comment Donna! Good luck in your puppy search!